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Home Industry News Saliva samples ‘can be used to accurately predict age’

Saliva samples ‘can be used to accurately predict age’

23rd June 2011

New research has revealed the potential applications of saliva in determining a person's age.

Geneticists from the University of California – Los Angeles (UCLA) have created a patented test that examines the biological process of methylation as expressed by genetic patterns in saliva samples.

Without knowing anything else about the test subjects, researchers were able to correctly identify their ages to within five years.

In addition to the applications this could have in criminal investigations, this may also have uses in developing personalised medicine, as the technique is able to measure a person's biological rather than chronological age.

Principal investigator Dr Eric Vilain from the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA said: "Doctors could predict your medical risk for a particular disease and customise treatment based on your DNA's true biological age, as opposed to how old you are."

This comes at a time when personalised medicine is becoming more prominent, with a 2010 report from the Tufts Center for the Study of Drug Development suggesting that a personalised approach is being used in 12 to 50 per cent of research programmes conducted by major pharmaceutical companies.ADNFCR-8000103-ID-800597829-ADNFCR

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